Westlake Ace Hardware wanted to celebrate the season in a way that made customers smile. Given the popularity of all things zombie, and the fact that research showed stronger than average search volume for the term in the Midwest, it seemed a natural fit. After all, who better to prepare you for the zombie apocalypse than a hardware store.
We put a fresh spin on zombies by creating a wacky story line. First, Westlake promoted preparedness for defense against zombies with tongue-in-cheek tips and tool ideas. The zombies took notice and protested for equal treatment, vowing to live in peace with humans. Westlake listened, encouraged tolerance and provided tips to help zombies delay their decay. The campaign was rolled out over 30 days culminating with a home page takeover on Halloween.
From web pages with fun FAQs, to videos, in-store signage and social media, the initiative took hold and went viral in a much bigger way than any of us expected. The campaign resulted in over 45k mentions, hundreds of news stories, thousands of blog posts and tweets from all around the world.